I spent my morning today in court, trying a workers’ comp case. The insurance company and employer were hoping to stop my client’s weekly TTD–temporary total disability– checks, on the basis that he either had returned to work or should have returned to work by now.
My client has done a job search but he spilled coffee on his laptop computer and all his records were lost when the computer was fried by the coffee. So, months and months of job search records were gone in a poof of steam. As a result, he did not have much in the way of proof that he had performed a diligent job search. A diligent and reasonable job search is required to prove disability in many cases. And it is up to the injured worker to prove it.
A vocational rehabilitiation professional (counselor) testified today for the carrier. She said that she always tells injured workers who are looking for a job to keep excellent records of all job search activities, because “it there is no record of it, then you did not do it.” She did not mean that literally, of course–she just meant that if you don’t keep paper records of the job search activities, no one is likely to believe you if you simply testify that you did it.
So, keeping adequate documentation of your job search is of great importance. If it is on your computer, print out a hard copy on paper every week or so and store that hard copy in a safe place. Then, if you happen to knock over your coffee mug and fry your hard drive, you will not have lost this important evidence of your job search!